Rose and I happened to walk by the new Mama Mia’s restaurant today.
That’s right, the NEW one.
One of San Miguel de Allende’s most popular restaurants has moved from the heart of Centro to Dr. Hernández Macías # 91.
Really, just around the corner, but worlds away a huge improvement.
OK, let’s make it clear, I’m not writing a review and I’m not encouraging anyone to dine out. This is not the time for that.
It is just that we are fond of Mama Mia, especially the Sunday buffet. and would stop in for the occasional lunch. Always appreciated the old Spanish courtyard atmosphere. A lot of people sniff at Mama Mia’s popularity and call it — gasp — touristy.
On a Sunday morning when we are the only gringos enjoying delicious food and the best Mexicano coffee in town, in a room filled with happy locals, I’m more than OK with that. (Or was, pre-COVID.)
While hiking to Atotonilco last year, we discovered Mama Mia Campestre and the refreshing five-beer sampler flight. That too, became a favorite.
(The Atotonilco site, literally in a grove of trees, is a nice option if you are thinking of easing back into restaurant dining. Tables are far, far apart and the setting is lovely.)
But. On to the new Mama. It is open for business.
We poked our heads in and asked if we could take a peek. After scrubbing down, stomping feet in the wash, and temperatures taken, the hostess lead us around on a quick tour.
First off, there is a small coffee shop up front — intimate, cool and dark with an overstuffed couch and chairs. I see myself sitting there some day with a book and hot cup o joe.
Next, the open-air waiting area doubles as the bar while a larger one remains under construction.
The restaurant itself is a gorgeous multi-tiered arena that incorporates Roman pillars, graceful ruins, a huge glass dome, and a garden setting filled with plants and mature trees.
This place is going to need as many groundskeepers and gardeners as waiters
Many tables seem to sit on their own private terraces and in nooks and corners. This is social separation at its grandest.
I don’t know the story behind the move. It takes guts — or that Mother of Invention: Necessity — to pull off something this spectacular during a pandemic.